chapter  2
26 Pages

Chymicorum in morem: Refraction, Matter Theory, and Secrecy in the Harriot–Kepler Correspondence

Jupiter’s satellites’, Archives internationales d’histoire des sciences, 32 (1982), 9-51, esp. pp. 9-12. For the important ways in which Galileo’s understanding of his lunar observations

Lower’s letter was suffused with melancholy. His beloved son had just died (as he informs Harriot) and he reflected mournfully both on his loss and Harriot’s constant intellectual misfortune. Yet he also offered himself and his friend consolation and remedy. For himself, he took strength in remembering Harriot’s own example of submission to the will of God as he had borne his various misfortunes, so that ‘onlie my wife with more griefe beares this affliction, yet now again she begins to be comforted’. But even if Harriot had accepted his intellectual losses with equanimity, Lower could not approve of his resignation, and offered him some blunt advice:

Onlie let this remember you, that it is possible by too much procrastination to be prevented in the honor of some of your rarest inventions and speculations. Let your Countrie and friends injoye the comforts they would have in the true and great honor you would purchase your selfe by publishing some of your choise works.